AT&T Inc, CenturyLink, Verizon and other telecom and cable groups are banding together to stop US federal officials from reclassifying the Internet as a Title II public utility and implementing a standard that prevents providers from interfering with consumer Web use.
This past Friday, the companies sent filings to the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) citing “crushing compliance costs and threats to investment” in upgrades that would provide better Internet services and lead to technological innovation, asking the FCC to block specific parts of the new rules, not to suspend the new principal rules of net neutrality themselves.
Public Utility classification is meant to stop internet providers from giving preferential speeds or bonus features to content companies willing to pay extra, instead internet providers would have to treat every content source equally. They are currently set to go into effect starting with June 12th.
The telecom and cable groups fighting the movement would like to prevent a general implementation of common carrier rules, while allowing a ban on preferential treatment for consumers. It is however uncertain if they have that authority or not.
The new filings to the FCC are expected to be rejected, with many speculating that the conflict will turn into a court case and successfully halter the implementation of the new net neutrality rules for the time being.
Many companies have filed legal actions regarding the regulatory actions, but FCC is requesting those legal actions be heard by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, a court that already supports the FCC’s and their new Internet regulations.
The filings to the FCC came from the USTelecom Association, CTIA-The Wireless Association, National Cable and Telecommunications Association, the American Cable Association, AT&T, CenturyLink and the Wireless Internet Service Providers Association.
Image Source: independent.co.uk